Learn to Sail in Greece with RYA Family Training Courses

Action packed holidays for families who can’t sit still!


If you are a family looking to take the youngsters on an action-packed learning experience while exploring the real Greece, then an RYA training course involving the whole family could be for you. Ideal for unqualified yet keen sailors-in-the-making, an RYA course opens up a world of opportunities for future adventures by sea.

The RYA is the UK’s national governing body for dinghy, yacht and motor cruising among other watersports. They provide training from recreational to professional level all over the world and are leaders in the industry. Sail Ionian Sea School’s affiliation with the RYA means that our professional RYA Cruising Instructors can offer a wide range of practical sailing courses in the Greek sunshine with the most popular courses being RYA Competent Crew for beginners and RYA Day Skipper for those with some previous sailing experience. The RYA Day Skipper qualification is the minimum requirement for anyone looking to charter a yacht in Greece, the Mediterranean and many others places in the world so to say the RYA courses have become more popular in recent years would be an understatement!

So if Mum or Dad have the relevant pre course experience and theoretical knowledge for RYA Day Skipper, and the children are eager to learn a new hobby in the RYA Competent Crew course taught by a fun, friendly instructor who will feel like part of the family at the end of the course, RYA training as a family is a great way to pair a holiday with a learning experience.

The RYA Competent Crew course is a 5 day course which is aimed at those completely new to sailing or with dinghy sailing experience. During the course you will learn all of the skills required to become a useful crew member aboard a yacht anywhere in the world, with some extras in the training thrown in – you’ll even have the opportunity to moor the boat and navigate each day! Our minimum age for this course is 8 years old and for anyone younger, we’ve come up with an in-house certificate for aspiring mini-pirates.

RYA Day Skipper also runs over 5 days with a night sail in there too, you’ll be taught off the skills needed to safely skipper a yacht by day. Plenty of time at the helm, close-quarter handling and sail trim make for an intense yet hugely satisfying course

The fantastic thing about taking the RYA courses in the Ionian is that not only is the weather predictable with dawn-til-dusk sunshine but you’ll also be island hopping at the same time! The Ionian islands of Meganisi, Kastos, Kefalonia & Ithaca are the perfect playground for newbie sailors with relatively short distances to sail between islands, calm seas and easy line of sight navigation.

But the best bit? It’s got to be that the 6th and final day of the holiday is used as a free sailing day – ideal to consolidate all of your newly learned skills in a relaxed, family environment without the instructor on board. We will issue the certificates and as a newly qualified family, you’ll get a taste of what a real bareboat charter feels like. Stopping in a secluded bay for a swim, a leisurely lunch followed by an exciting afternoon’s sail.

With our family RYA training courses, you are guaranteed to come away from a fantastic and informative sailing holiday in the beautiful surroundings of the Greek Ionian islands, with a wealth of new found knowledge that will serve as a solid foundation for any further sailing that you choose to do as family. Be warned, it’s extremely addictive and the children will be pestering you to rebook on the coach back to the airport!

Already qualified? Then go for a bareboat charter exploring the Ionian at your own pace over a week, 10 days or even a fortnight on board a beautifully maintained sailing yacht. The assisted sailing scheme aims to brush up and refresh skills by taking a skipper with you for a day, two days or more. This is a great option for rusty sailors at the beginning of your holiday, allowing you then to sail off around the islands with confidence in your sailing and mooring ability.

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